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Large-scale force budget: Identification of interest areas and assessment of a data set for the large drainage basin of Jutulstraumen, East Antarctica

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A large-scale force budget is a relatively simple but useful tool for initial investigation of ice dynamics; however, it requires an extensive data set. Identification of key measurement areas and assessment of the spatial variability of the required measurement accuracies is advantageous prior to measuring such large drainage basins. Identification of areas and assessment of data requires several steps and in the paper velocities and surface topography are modelled numerically for Jutulstraumen drainage basin, representing ~1% of the Antarctic ice sheet (124,000 km2). A preliminary large-scale force budget is calculated from the modelled results, and key areas are identified. Finally, the required measurement accuracies yielding 10% uncertainty of the estimated stresses are calculated through error propagation of the force budget equations. Based on the results it is recommended to prioritize more accurate measurements for determining the driving stresses for the entire basin, and the longitudinal stresses in the funnel area of Jutulstraumen. The required measurement accuracy varies strongly over the basin, limiting the effective use of remote sensed data for deriving stresses. Radar altimetry surface elevation data can be used on the lower half of the plateau, and InSAR velocity data on the lower parts of the plateau and down-glacier.
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Keywords: Antarctica; Jutulstraumen; force budget; measurement uncertainties; numerical modelling

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2009-06-01

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